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Another year has arrived.  I was up very early this morning thanks to my fur–baby and was able to see the glorious sunrise.  A really beautiful morning!

WOW OH WOW!!! Where has the time gone.  The years continue to fly by.  I remember as a child when I couldn’t wait to be 7 years old.  It seemed to take for ever for that birthday to come.  When it finally did arrive I all but missed it.

Nineteen years ago we were looking at the beginning of a new century.  There was so much speculation as to how the change from the 1900’s to the 2000’s would affect life as we knew it.  From potential power outages to people hoarding food.  Eric and I spent that New Years Eve at Disney World with our long time friends, Spence and Carol.  As a precaution, Disney shut down all rides a few minutes before midnight and had portable lighting throughout Magic Kingdom.  Midnight came and went without any major incidents or interruption of computers or other systems.  The first ride of the New Millennium for us was The Runaway Mine Train.  Such wonderful memories.

I grew up southern.  My mother was southern as was her mother.  So I guess it comes as no surprise that every year on New Year’s Day my family is served black eyed peas, rice, greens and cornbread.  Let us not forget those green onions!  As Hubby will tell you the meal wouldn’t be complete without cornbread and onions.  There have been a couple of years that I probably fixed slaw in lieu of the greens but being back in the south, I can now enjoy the benefits of greens.

Collards, kale and turnip greens are loaded with Vitamins A and C as well as calcium and fiber.  The traditional southern method of cooking greens is to cook the life out of them.  Hours of cooking them down with fat meat and lots of pot liquor to be sopped up with cornbread.  Well for health reasons I can’t afford to eat like that.  I now prefer to keep the cooking time down to about 15 minutes, usually combine a couple of different varieties of greens and cook them in flavorful chicken stock.  They are lightly seasoned with sea salt, freshly ground pepper and a touch of balsamic vinegar drizzled over at the end.  Of course all ingredients are gluten free.

In the mid to late 1980’s I found a great recipe for Creole Black-Eyes and Rice and over the years have changed and rearranged to make it mine.  It’s a really great recipe that over the years I adapted for the slow cooker.  The finished product is served now with Alton Brown’s Baked Brown Rice. The cornbread this year was one that was posted on Food.com in 2005, Blue Cornbread. The cornbread can be easily made with gluten free flour.

We had another wonderful Christmas with family and friends.  There is nothing like having Christmas with small children in the house.  The girl’s were here.  The two granddaughters and then two grand-dogs.  Brisa spent the day hiding out in the master bedroom.  There was just too much going on to please her!

The New Year’s dinner has been served, the kitchen cleaned and my post almost finished.  Below is the recipe for the Mixed Greens.  Hope you have a wonderful and prosperous New Year.

Leftovers are pretty much gone.  The last of the ham was packaged and frozen.  I had about 2 pounds of butternut squash in the refrigerator begging to be cooked.  This so happened to be the portion with the seeds and was just the right amount to make soup for 2 or 3.  The recipe I found on-line called for butter and heavy cream.  As I still fight the cholesterol battle I wanted to make the soup a little healthier and think I succeeded without compromising taste.

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